First, I am not going to tell you who I think you should vote for or why. This post is not about my personal opinions or feelings on our nation’s political scene. All I want to do is to encourage you encourage you to involve your kids in the voting process. Explain why it is important to vote. Show them how to research what you are voting on. Maybe take them with you to vote so they can see you in action.
The 2012 Presidential Election is all over the TV, Internet, billboard ads, and even making our telephones ring off the hook. Most of us are getting pretty tired of the mudsling and constant campaign pictures all over Facebook. Election Day is almost here. I am sure many of us will be glad, for one reason or another, when Tuesday has come and gone.
It is very important to teach our kids about how our government works and what role our law makers have in our government. They need to understand what the President’s job is and why it is so important to make informed decisions when we cast our votes. Well, as informed as possible anyway. Sometimes it is hard to know what truth is and what mudslinging is.
There are literally thousands of websites to look at. How do we know what is real and what isn’t? If you figure that one out, please let me know. I feel like no matter where I look, I get biased information.
When teaching our kids, we don’t necessarily need to be that specific. We can teach them about the history behind voting and why it is important. It doesn’t have to be about the specific topics being voted on at this time. Younger kids can learn about the process. Older kids you could dive into the topics if you wanted to, explaining on how to figure out how to pick the candidates that best fit your values, opinions and so on.
Taking your kids with you may not be easy. Lines can be long. So you will have to decide if it is age appropriate to expect them to wait or bring things to keep them busy while you are waiting. The benefit, especially for older kids, is that they get to see how it all works. Be prepared for a lot of questions, and some of them could get a little tricky.
Also be prepared (at least mentally) for people around you to possibly put in their two cents. Politics tends to be a very emotional topic for a lot of people. So this is a good time to talk to kids about how we all have the same rights. We all have the right to our own thoughts and opinions. That we may not always agree on everything or every aspect of something and that is OK! That is one of many things that makes our country great! The right to share our thoughts and opinions without the fear of being persecuted for it!
Here are a few resources for teaching your kids about voting and involving them in the process: